Bihar's World Famous Sonpur Fair will start from November 25
- 15 Nov 2023
- 3 min read
Why in News?
According to the information received from the media on November 14, 2023, the world famous Sonpur Fair to be held in Harihar region of Bihar will start on November 25 and will continue till December 26 (32 days).
- Sonpur Fair is one of the largest cattle fairs in Asia, held at the confluence of two rivers, Ganga and Gandak, in Sonpur, located on the border of Saran and Vaishali districts of Bihar.
- Popular since ancient times for trading of livestock, this month-long event begins on the auspicious occasion of Kartik Purnima in the month of November.
- The fair, which starts every year with the bathing of Kartik Purnima, is also known as 'Harihar Kshetra Mela' while the local people call it 'Chhattar Mela'. Hindu devotees come to the area to take a holy dip in the Ganga and Gandak rivers and offer prayers at the Harihar Nath temple.
- Although this fair is famous by the name of Pashu Mela (cattle fair), the specialty of this fair is that everything from needles to elephants can be purchased here.
- This fair also has historical importance. It is believed that traders from Central Asia used to come to this fair to buy animals and this fair was the largest centre for war elephants. Chandragupta Maurya, the founder of the Maurya dynasty, Mughal emperor Akbar and Veer Kunwar Singh, the hero of the Gadar of 1857, also purchased elephants from the Sonpur fair.
- In 1803, Robert Clive also built a big horse stable in Sonpur. Apart from this, there is mention of Guru Nanak Dev of Sikhism coming here in religions and Lord Buddha also came here during his visit to Kushinagar.
- The Harihar Nath Temple in Sonpur boasts a unique distinction as the sole temple worldwide featuring an integrated idol of Hari (Vishnu) and Har (Shiva). Legend has it that Brahma himself once consecrated this temple. Additionally, near the Sangam, the idol of Dakshineshwar Kali is accompanied by a pillar from the Shunga period.